Advocacy for ASD in Canberra/ACT

ACT: letter to Chief Minister -

Dear Mr Barr MLA & Ms Berry MLA

Speaking Out for Autism Spectrum Disorder (SOfASD) remains concerned that there has been no discernible progress in the ACT Education Directorate towards recognising the need for and employing properly trained and registered behavioural clinicians to support students with distressed behavior in ACT schools. 

ACT Government: number of autistic prisoners

prisoners being sniffed by sniffer dog on lead

SOfASD asked the ACT Government how many autistic prisoners there are in the AMC. You can download the Minister's response (6/7/2018) from the link below.

Basically, the ACT Government says:

  • it doesn't know how many of its prisoners (detainees?) are autistic
  • detainees can self-identify as autistic and have their claim written on their ACTCS Induction Form
  • its system "offer[s] a supported environment and care coordination for detainees with identified complex needs". They do not indicate how many detainees meet this criterion, or say whether self-identifying as autistic means having "identified complex needs" (it's sounds unlikely).  The ACT Government provided no evidence whatsoever of any actual support
  • it asked the AMC and JHS "to work collaboratively on improving the data collection and storage processes" ... if this happens the ACT Government may be able eventually to answer basic questions about the number of autistic prisoners

ACT: number of autistic prisoners

To:RATTENBURY <RATTENBURY@act.gov.au>
CC:Rachel Stephen-Smith <rachel@rachelstephensmith.org>, ramsay@act.gov.au, Mr Andrew Barr MLA <barr@act.gov.au>, STEPHEN-SMITH <stephen-smith@act.gov.au>

Dear Minister

We note Emily Baker's story, ACT government unsure how many prisoners have disability, in the Canberra Times (3/6/2018).

We are not aware of any stakeholder engagement on this issue which is disappointing since autism spectrum disorder is currently the biggest distinct disability type in the NDIS.

letter to Carers ACT

Carers ACT logo

Hi

I was told that at one of your recent workshops, the presenter and a Carer's ACT staff member told a mother of an autistic child that in order for the child to be eligible for the NDIS she needed an updated autism diagnosis if their child was diagnosed under the (pre-2013) DSM-IV.

Please do not tell people this, I understand that this is incorrect. The text of the DSM-5 (available at http://a4.org.au/dsm5-asd), the updated/post-2013 manual, says:

SOfASD & A4 - submission on the NDIS

stamps saying "submission"

Here is the submission from Speaking Out for Autism Spectrum Disorder (SOfASD) and Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) to the Inquiry into the implementation, performance and governance of the National Disability Insurance Scheme being conducted by the Health, Ageing and Community Services Committee of the ACT Legistaltive Assembly.

The submission concludes:

NDIA, autism stakeholders and early intervention

Subject:
Date:
From:
Organization:
Re: Letter from Minister Stephen-Smith
Sun, 8 Apr 2018 12:03:58 +1000
Bob Buckley (A4 Convenor) <convenor@a4.org.au>
Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4)

Minister R. Stephen-Smith MLA
ACT Legislative Assembly

Dear Ms Stephen-Smith MLA

Thank you for your response to our email. I also appreciate the time you spend talking to me at your "mobile office" on the 2-MAR-2018.

I am intrigued by the paragraph in your response that says:

I note that you also raised concerns with Ms De Luca regarding the NDIA Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) approach as it relates to autism. The ACT Government is aware that there are a number of community concerns relating to the ECEI approach as outlined in your correspondence. The Office for Disability is actively working with the NDIA both at a national and regional level to address these concerns and hopes to influence a positive outcome.

I expect that the precise "number" that you refer to in "a number of community concerns" is zero.

SOfASD submission on disability employment in the ACT

SOfASD made a submission to the ACT Assembly Standing Committee on Health, Ageing and Community Services for its Inquiry into the Employment of people with disabilities.

The submission concludes:

Little is known about employment outcomes for autistic people in the ACT. It is likely that employment outcomes for autistic people are as dismal in the ACT as they are nationally.

Disability policy and programs will not deliver equitable outcomes for autistic people until programs recognise ASD is a distinct disability.

recognise behavioural clinicians in the ACT

Ms Y Berry MLA
Minister for Education and Early Childhood Development
Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly
GPO Box 1020
Canberra ACT 2601

 

Dear Ms Berry MLA

Subject: recognise behavioural clinicians in the ACT

Thank you for your response (29/3/2017) to our emails.

SOfASD is disappointed that you chose to deny implicitly our request to meet (made in our letter 30/1/2017).

In your response, you wrote:

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